Waiting to Take Detroit

Waiting to Take Detroit

Recently I heard from a man with a heart for Detroit. He's in intern-ville, with one more year of on-campus seminary after that.  But deep down, his heart has already moved to the rusted steel skeleton of what once was.  That's where he wants to plant a church.

I'm not a Detroit fan.  Too cold.  Too far north.  I don't understand their accent, nor they, mine.  But I admire people who love that city because it is God's city, after all.  They're His people.  He knows them all.  And He's always looking for men and women who share His passion.

Said Detroit fan wanted to know what to do with his desire as he waits.  I was reminded of Psalm 37:4

Delight in the LORD, and He will give you the desires of your heart.

Here are the seven thoughts I penned for him.  If you're in a waiting time, looking to start a ministry, I encourage you to wait this way.

KEEP PRAYING.  Keep doing what you're doing, asking God to reveal His heart to yours.  There is a lot you don't know.  Ask Him to reveal His vision for Detroit that He wants to be brought about through you.  Ask God to reveal the hurts, needs, and resources for a ministry to His people in the city.  Turn your heart over to His and allow it to be formed by Him in this process. 

WRITE IT DOWN. Write your thoughts down in a living Detroit document.  Refine it.  Share it occasionally with a close friend.  Allow this time and information to form and shape this vision.  This waiting time is a working time.  Keep a record.

TELL YOUR DESIRES TO THOSE IN AUTHORITY. In this man's case, a district president needs to be informed.  Denominational leaders are always looking for men and women to take back the city.  Especially Detroit.  Make yourself known, and remind them you're there every 6 months.

BEGIN GETTING YOUR HEAD AROUND BEING A WORKER PRIEST. Unless God provides a benefactor, you'll probably need to have another vocation to provide income for you and your family early on.  Time is money, and money is time.  So if you don't have one, you'll need the other.

PRAY FOR BENEFACTORS OR RELATIONSHIPS THAT WILL HELP FUND THE MINISTRY. We have not because we ask not.  Someone said that.  Be bold in your ask of God.  Be bold, and trust the results to Him.  If it's of His will, He will provide.  This prayer is asking Him to provide a specific financial way.  Generally He provides just enough, just when you need it.

TALK WITH COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT EXPERTS. This is a huge need in Detroit.  Begin thinking about what community endeavor or business partnership could provide both a bridge into the neighborhood and financial revenue for the ministry.  Talk with Oscar Benavides of LINC-North Texas or Mark Junkans of LINC-Houston.

PRAY SOME MORE. Pray for those strategic partnerships or alliances.  Pray for insight and understanding of how God wants to reform the city.  Pray for relationships with people you can learn from.  Pray for people who will join you in this divine cause. 


  1. Hi Bill. I’d be interested in being connected with this person you speak of. We are hoping to move back to the Detroit area in the next year and I’d be very interested in helping them in any way that I could. Please feel free to pass on my email to them.

    • Great, Jennifer.  I’ll send him your information.  Very cool.  Thank you for posting.

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